Skipping School on Gameday

Skipping class on game day can result in a game forfeit, as some students have discovered recently. However, the consequences have been unclear as the rules are different across the board.

In mid-September, a player on the boy’s soccer team skipped his first block class on a game day. He went on to play the soccer game later that day, allegedly not telling anyone that he had skipped. The athletic director for Truckee High, Erika Murphy, ended up finding out about his spotty attendance and drama ensued. There was talk of the game getting forfeited and consequences that the whole team would suffer, but almost none of it came to pass. 

According to Murphy, the notoriously strict attendance rule is not, in fact, an enforced NIAA rule. So heavily sanctioned at Truckee High and by the Athletic Department, it’s actually just a TTUSD rule. Because the NIAA doesn’t necessarily agree with the policy and has more relaxed ideas surrounding player attendance, the boy’s game wasn’t forfeited after all. Murphy said she had sent the information about his absence to the NIAA and let them make a decision on how to move forward, resulting in them landing on allowing the boys to keep their win and ranking.

This isn’t to say that skipping class on game day (or any day) is something one could get away with; it could still potentially result in a forfeit and serious consequences that won’t leave a coach and/or team happy. In situations like these, it seems that Murphy will gather your information and allow the NIAA to make a decision with the full context of the situation. This could result in many different outcomes ranging from a strict warning to much more severe consequences, especially if a student has a history of multiple strikes.

Being a student-athlete means just what it implies: student first, athlete second. Getting those two messed up can become a serious situation, like what happened with the boy’s soccer team. Athletes at Truckee High School must remember their commitment to schoolwork is always a priority because grades and attendance can make all the difference in an important league game and an ultimate standing in the ranks. Sports are important, but they take no precedence over academics.